Autodesk Licensing

Licensing Options

Autodesk provides two main types of licenses:

Stand Alone Licenses
Network Licenses

Stand-Alone Licenses

Stand-alone licenses are ideal for individuals or small offices requiring only a few individuals to access and use Autodesk products.  They do not require network connectivity to run and often cost less than network licenses for the same product.

A stand-alone license supports one or more Autodesk products for an individual user and computer.  For most Autodesk products, a copy can be installed on a second computer for “non-concurrent usage”, meaning the two copies cannot run at the same time. This allows for use of your Autodesk product on your work computer as well as your personal computer at home for example.

Similarly, a Multi-seat Stand-alone license supports a specific number of users, allowing you to install, register, and activate one or more Autodesk products on several computers using a single serial number.

Network Licenses

Network licenses are ideal for larger organizations that require many individuals to access and use Autodesk software from multiple locations.  

A network license supports the use of Autodesk products up to a maximum number of users or “seats”, who are connected to a server network. The products can be installed on as many computers as desired; however, at any one time, can only run on the maximum number of computers for which licenses have been purchased.  Because you can install the products on more systems than the number of licenses purchased, you get true floating licenses across your entire organization.

A software utility known as the Network License Manager (NLM) issues licenses to users, up to the number of seats purchased. If all network licenses are in use, no more computers can run the Autodesk product until a license is returned to the NLM. The NLM is supported by the three possible server models below.  When purchasing a network license, you specify the server model which best suits your needs.

  • Single License Server Model – The most basic of the three options, the Network License Manager is installed on only one server, so all license management and activity is restricted to one single location. A single license file represents the total number of licenses available on the server.
  • Distributed License Server Model – Licenses are divided across more than one server, each containing a unique license file representing a portion of your total number of licenses. The Network License Manager is installed on each server so all license activity and management is distributed among the number of servers that best suits your needs.  Servers do not need to exist on the same subnet and if one fails, the licenses on the remaining servers are still available.
  • Redundant License Server Model – All licenses are configured on three different servers.  Each server contains the same license file so all of your software licenses are available on each server. The Network License Manager is installed on each server and can monitor and issue licenses as long as at least two of your three servers are functional.  All three servers must be located on the same subnet and have consistent network communications (slow, erratic, or dial-up connections are not supported).

For more information, read Choosing an Autodesk network license server model.